Old Mattresses Make Recycled Chairs

madam rubens chair photo

image from Coolhunting

"Hot or not?" is how one blog started and we have to agree... Apartment Therapy took a vote and 21 thought it was hot whilst 391 did not. Where to start.

Frank Willems, the designer, is Dutch and is committed to recycling and reusing the materials in our environment. He became famous with this chair, called the "Madame Rubens". Why that name? She is a "plump but sophisticated lady after an extreme makeover"...

mattress makeover frank willems. photo

image from Coolhunting

He explains his inspiration: "At a visit to a waste processing facility I learned almost all types of waste appeared to have a destination, except mattresses. They cause trouble because they get stuck between the shredders...For this reason, I started to work with old mattresses."

Willems takes old mattresses and folds and ties them, voluminous as they are. He adds antique legs and colours each one differently. Since they are one-offs, each is different and unique. The "petit pouf" looks very soft although balance may be a problem; it is made of folded mattresses only. The "plus de Reubens" looks like a proper chair. All the hand-made pieces are covered with a hygienic water-resistant foam coating and painted over in a single bold colour. Frank Willems Via : Financial Times
More on Unusual Chairs
London Design Festival: Chairs Galore
Chair Survey: 2007
The Thonet Project

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